This time-lapse footage shows yesterday’s deadly tornado going from a neat, eerie-looking funnel to a giant clusterfuck of wind and destruction. It’s pretty stunning, but still easier to watch than pictures of lost dogs or decimated homes.
Part of the reason this tornado was so destructive is that it was on the ground for 40 minutes — many tornadoes only touch down for a fraction of that time. It was also unusually large and fast, though not the largest or fastest the country has ever seen. Watching the video won’t necessarily give you a sense of the scale, because the scale is almost unimaginable (the tornado was up to two miles wide — the best description I read said “the size of Chelsea,” though that’s only really helpful to people familiar with New York). But it does give you some idea of how chaotic it must have been.
- How to Understand the Scale of the Oklahoma Tornado, Smithsonian
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